1 Peter 4:5 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Peter 4:5, NIV: But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

1 Peter 4:5, ESV: but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

1 Peter 4:5, KJV: Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.

1 Peter 4:5, NASB: but they will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

1 Peter 4:5, NLT: But remember that they will have to face God, who will judge everyone, both the living and the dead.

1 Peter 4:5, CSB: They will give an account to the one who stands ready to judge the living and the dead.

What does 1 Peter 4:5 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

To live for pleasure, no matter what lines are crossed, is a common lifestyle for those apart from God. It's true in our time, and it was true in Peter's time. In fact, it may even have been the routine for most in Peter's Greco-Roman era. In the previous two verses, Peter made it clear that those committed to doing God's will in Christ, those who had suffered or were ready to suffer for Him, do not participate in such a lifestyle. It may be part of their past, but living for sinful pleasures has no place in the Christian's present. Nor is it meant to be part of our future.

Self-control will not earn the respect and tolerance of pleasure-seekers, though. Peter writes that they resent Christians for their abstinence. They "heap abuse" on believers for sitting out the drinking parties and the raucous idol-worshiping.

And yet, God is paying attention. Pleasure-seekers will stand before God and "give account" of their lives at the final judgment. God—in this context, probably Jesus Himself (Acts 10:42; 2 Timothy 4:1; Romans 14:9)—is ready, right now, to judge the living and the dead. This is meant to include all people who have ever lived or died. Peter implies that suffering Christians may be abused, for now. Ultimately, though, they will be vindicated by God for their refusal to go along with the pressures of culture. We will be rewarded for resisting the urge to be accepted through pleasure-seeking.